New Community Work Day schedule

Expanded Opportunity at the Land Trust!

Community Work Days Now Monthly

The Land Trust needs your help to stay beautiful! You may have noticed the morning glory and air potato vines taking over, among other invasives. We even have a fresh patch of kudzu. At our August board meeting, we decided to switch from a quarterly Community Work Day to monthly – the 3rd Saturday of every month, starting at 3:00 pm. At 6:00, we will knock off for pizza. At dusk, around 7:00, the drum circle begins. (From March to September, all of this will happen an hour later.)

This month’s Community Work Day will be Saturday, October 21, 3:00 to 6:00 pm. Note that our calendar postcard for 2017 lists a quarterly work day on Sunday, October 15. That one is now canceled and replaced with the new monthly one the following weekend.

For years, our work days were timed for the day after each drum circle on the theory that announcing it the night before would keep it fresh in people’s minds. But twice a month was a little too often, and as drum circle attendance declined it made less sense. Our next experiment was holding a work day each season. Spring and summer work days were dedicated to prepping the land for our two music festivals. This was necessary work, but left too much undone in these two crucial seasons, and by fall we were way behind on basic maintenance. We hope the switch to a monthly work day will strike the right balance to attract some willing volunteers on a regular basis.

A 1.7 acre greenspace needs lots of loving attention. Some basic maintenance is handled by paid labor, like mowing and dealing with trash and recycling. We also pay for expertise when needed, such as weeding the native trees and grasses on the Dekalb hillside. But as anyone can see, we need more hands and bodies actively engaged in holding back the jungle.

In addition to clearing vines and pulling invasive weeds, ongoing tasks include spreading wheelbarrow-loads of wood chips on the paths to avoid a muddy mess when it rains. Right now our backlog also includes repairs to fences, rebuilding stairways, and building a tool shed. Picnic tables, chairs, and gazebos need occasional fresh coats of stain. Our plumbing and electrical volunteers could use knowledgeable assistance and, eventually, an apprentice or two.

The Land Trust’s founders and board members are growing older and looking to the future. We see droves of young people and families visiting and enjoying the land. They might not realize that what they’re enjoying is the result of countless hours of hard work, almost all of it done by volunteers for the sheer pleasure of watching the beauty of this place unfold. If they have never experienced it themselves, they might not know how deep and rewarding that pleasure can be. We are thrilled to provide an opportunity for all our visitors to learn the joys of giving back in return for nature’s gifts.

Someday we will be gone and it is a comfort to know that others are adopting this land as we have done – not just as a place to visit, but as a place where they have invested their time, sweat, and love. Working together on a worthwhile project is fun and rewarding – try it! The more you pitch in and help, the more you are the community in our name!

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Ladybug Garden Fun!

Creating a Children’s Garden and Environmental Theater at the Land Trust

by Andrea Zoppo

After two years of offering a variety of family fun programs with our collaborative All Together Series, Miss Ladybug and the Land Trust are recruiting families to join in the creation of a Children’s Garden!  A welcoming sanctuary for play and connecting deeply with Nature and its systems, the garden will encourage children’s curiosity, interest, and problem-solving in our natural world.  With your help we can facilitate and create a launching pad for discovery and growth, a safe place where children and families are invited to explore and learn the lessons of mindfulness, stewardship and wellbeing.

As a living classroom within the Land Trust, the Children’s Garden has the potential to create new art forms and young activists. We want to open discussions and possibilities in the dramatic arts with children, for children, with the garden as our inspiration.  The nine events that are planned around the garden will expand on the explorations of the All Together Now series, including development of a puppet theater and a puppet show we will perform for the Land Trust community at the Spring Peace & Love Fest. Interested children are also invited to take part in a Garden Theater camp the week of June 26.

The Children’s Garden project is generously supported by a host of wonderful partners including Terra Nova Compost, Beech Hollow Farms, Sustenance Design, and Urban Sprout Farms.  You will also have the opportunity to support the garden and its programs by attending our events and through a crowdfunding campaign we will unveil this spring.  Together we have the resources to create a magical space and programs that are dynamically engaging and sustainable. We hope many of you will be inspired to get involved early, so that this special garden and its programming may be guided in collaboration with local children.

As part of our joint effort, Miss Ladybug asks local families to submit a fun and unique name for the Children’s Garden at the Land Trust.  We will collect ideas and vote on them.  Due date for ideas is April 1.  Email submissions to with “Garden Name Submission” as subject.  Community voting on submissions is April 9, 4:00 pm, at our third garden program.  The official unveiling of the name will be June 4.  The family that submits the winning name will have the great honor of placing the first garden gnome statue in the new garden!

Want to volunteer, join our garden club, reserve a spot in our Garden Theater camp, or get more info?  Email to get on our new list.  Don’t have time for all that?  No worries, join us if you can for any or all of our upcoming events, all on Sunday afternoons from 4:00 to 6:00, as in the past.  Each one of the programs listed below will include collaborative theater elements, environmental education, hands-on garden work, and a healthy delicious seasonal snack.

Miss Ladybug and the LCCLT thank you for bringing family fun energy to the treasure that is our lovely Land Trust.  We look forward to playing in the dirt with you soon!

Children’s Garden days at the Lake Claire Community Land Trust

Selected Sundays, 4:00-6:00 pm.  $5 donation.

February 12:  Have S’more Garden Fundraising Kick off and Beautification

March 19:  Garden Designing and Beautification with an Equinox celebration

April 9:   Beautification Project and Spring Planting

June 4:  Garden Name Unveiling, Summer Planting and Nature Crafts

June 26-30:  Garden Theater Camp! 8am-1pm 

July 23:  Garden Beautification, Summer Harvesting and Fall Planting

August 27:  Garden Beautification, Summer Harvesting and Fall Planting

Sept: 24:  Garden Beautification and Equinox Celebration

Nov 12:  Have S’more Garden Show

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“Dead of Winter” Dance, Feb. 11

Turn on Your Love Light for Valentine’s Day!

The Lake Claire Community Land Trust welcomes the Ex-P.A.N.D. Band back to the First Existentialist Congregation, 270 Candler Park Drive, NE, Atlanta Ga, 30307, on Saturday, February 11, 2017.  The doors will open at 7:00 pm and the music will begin at 8:00.  The Ex-P.A.N.D. Band will be playing the music of the Grateful Dead, and the evening promises to be filled with fellowship and fun as we celebrate the Land Trust and its efforts to keep Lake Claire green.  Your donation at the door will help defray expenses the Land Trust incurs in making the community gardens a reality for those who otherwise might not be able to raise a garden.

The Ex-P.A.N.D. Band is a community favorite and if you have not had the opportunity to dance to the songs they play, you will not want to miss this chance to let the music take you to places where you soul and spirit can fly.  The band got its start back in the early 1980s as “Performing Artists for Nuclear Disarmament,” or P.A.N.D., but has since broadened its horizons, hence its current name.  Your support of the Land Trust and the artists in the Ex-P.A.N.D. Band will aid the community in maintaining one of Atlanta’s gentle places where all are welcome to celebrate nature, the community and the arts.

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Atlanta Stands with Standing Rock, Jan. 7

Sorry, this event has been canceled. Stay tuned for new date.


Join us on Saturday, Jan. 7, to support the Water Protectors in North Dakota! “Atlanta Stands with Standing Rock” is a fundraiser to benefit the resistance to the North Dakota Access Pipeline. We will be hosting a day of prayer, with traditional Native drumming and singing, followed by a brief meditation, then a potluck supper. There is no charge to attend, but we will be accepting donations to send directly to Standing Rock. Artists and craftspeople will also be selling donated pieces of art.

The event starts at 2:00 pm and will continue until sundown, when the Land Trust drum circle begins. We will have a warm fire in the firepit, and the Gorilla Grill will be heated for the occasion as well. Hot beverages will be available. Please bring a dish to contribute to the meal, which will be served inside the Grill. Don’t forget to bring plates, cups and utensils to minimize waste.

“Atlanta Stands with Standing Rock” is not sponsored by any organization, though I and some of the other volunteers are members of the Soul Medicine Tribe, made up of people from all backgrounds. Our medicine woman is Creek and Cherokee, and we are currently getting membership to the Oklevueha chapter of the Native American Church.  We believe that this tribe is helping to fulfill the Rainbow Clan prophecy, which is that when people of all races and backgrounds come together to learn the Native traditions, we will restore peace to the land.

Because the Land Trust is in a neighborhood, we encourage carpooling to avoid overwhelming the local streets. The Land Trust is about half a mile east of the Edgewood/Candler Park MARTA station. If you drive, be respectful of the surrounding houses by not speeding or parking in front of driveways. Passengers may disembark in the Arizona Ave. cul-de-sac, but parking there is reserved for residents. Please park at Clifton Sanctuary, 369 Connecticut Ave., on the corner of McLendon. Let’s show our gratitude to the Land Trust by treating it with respect and love.

If you have any questions or would like to volunteer, please pm or email Elyse O’Barr at Thank you so much for your interest, we look forward to seeing you! A’ho! Mitakuye oyasin.

For those who have not been following the story . . .

Lakota resisters and thousands of supporters have been camping near the Standing Rock reservation in the path of the nearly complete North Dakota Access Pipeline. The oil pipeline is projected to tunnel under the Missouri River, endangering the river and millions of people who depend on it for drinking water, including the Standing Rock tribes. Also at risk is the Ogallala Aquifer, which underlies millions of acres of Midwestern farmland. A recent pipeline rupture in Alabama – and an even more recent one in North Dakota, 150 miles from the encampment, on Dec. 14 – reinforce the protesters’ concerns. As winter closes in, the encampment has swelled to 20,000 people, including representatives of over a hundred Native nations; the federal government has canceled the pipeline’s permit to go under the river; and the pipeline’s contractors have announced they will begin tunneling anyway.


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1/8/17 LCCLT Board Meeting

LCCLT Board Meeting

All are welcome to attend our Board Meetings. Our next meeting will be on January 8th, 10:30-12:30 at the Gorilla Grill. Join us and learn how you can help keep the LT green!

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Benefit for Tanzanian Schoolkids

Benefit for Tanzanian Schoolkids at the Land Trust, Friday, Nov. 4

by Louisa Merchant

My name is Louisa Merchant, and I am the director of Refugee Ministries for All Saints’ Episcopal Church. Father Emmanuel Bwatta is a visiting priest who is here for a year serving at All Saints’ and getting an MA from Columbia Theological Seminary. Father Emmanuel lives in Tanzania where only 40% of the children of his country attend school, due to the $100 school fee that includes a uniform fee, which most families cannot pay. Apparently this is common in many African countries.


Because we work with refugee children who face so many obstacles here in spite of their access to free education, this concept of being denied free education really is astonishing. We decided the least we could do is send 50 kids to school, which means a fundraising goal of $5000. It is a rare opportunity to personally know someone who is trustworthy and can give these funds directly to the recipients without any organizational costs. The funds will be held in an account at All Saints’ until Father Emmanuel returns home in the spring and can disseminate them. Father Emmanuel will attend the event and speak at a designated time about his country and the educational obstacles for children. I will provide tax letters for donations of $25 or more through All Saints’, not including the $10 entry fee for the event.


This is a family-friendly event, and children of all ages are welcome. It will begin at 5:30 pm and go to 9:00, with story-telling, acoustic music, Karaoke, and s’mores. We will have a food truck so that people can purchase food independently, cutting down our costs and maximizing the amount of funds for the children. This event is open to the whole community, and I very much appreciate anyone who can help with spreading the word.


If people want to donate to the Tanzanian Education Fund at any time, they can go to and choose the “Stewardship” tab, select “Give a Gift” and designate Refugee Ministries. In the comment section say “Tanzanian Education Fund.”


I am thankful to the Land Trust community for the wonderful work they do providing a wonderful, special outdoor place that keeps children and families grounded in community.

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Holiday Arts and Crafts Sale!

Calling All Neighborhood Artists & Craftspeople!

Holiday Arts & Crafts Sale, Sat., December 3 from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm

by Miriam Herbers

For the first time the Land Trust is pleased to announce collaboration with our neighborhood civic organization to have the biggest yet Holiday Arts & Crafts Sale.

Each year we need a little more room as more artists participate. We think you will all be pleased with this year’s location in the beautiful natural light atrium of the Frazer Center. There is plenty of room for artists. The children’s section will be expanded. The adults in the Day program are being invited too. The Frazer Center is an easy walk, but parking is easy for those who cannot.

As always, 75% of all sales is the artist’s to keep. The LCCLT and LCN will split the remaining 25% for each group’s projcts. As in the past this will be a fun event where everybody gains.

This is your reminder to save the date and start making your beautiful handiwork! Soon after the election we will send specific information to those who have participated in the past and to all new particpants — which I hope are many.

Tell your friends they are welcome to sell — and buy. Contact Miriam Herbers at or Penn Sherwood at if you wish to participate as one of the artists.

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LCCLT Board Meeting

LCCLT Board Meeting

All are welcome to attend our Board Meetings. Our next meeting will be on October 30th, 10:30-12:30 at the Gorilla Grill. Join us and learn how you can help keep the LT green!

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LCCLT Board Meeting

All are welcome to attend our Board Meeting’s. Our next meeting will be on September 25th, 10:30-12:30 at the Gorilla Grill. Join us and learn how you can help keep the LT green!

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4th of July Cook-off and Potluck!


When:   Monday, July 4, 2016; Judging and eating start at 4:00; Bring entries at 3:45

Where:   Lake Claire Community Land Trust Gazebo

Theme:  FIGS – any kind / any way you want to prepare them

[Listing ingredients is helpful to those with food allergies]

Cost:   $1.00 to taste and judge the entries

Also: Bring a potluck item to share and….

Please bring your own plates, cups, napkins and cutlery for the pot luck

Anyone can participate in the cook-off by preparing a dish that includes the theme (this year it is FIGS). EVERYONE should bring a potluck item. The $1.00 fee entitles you to a ballot and a taste of all the entries.  1st, 2nd, 3rd place certificates will be awarded.

Photos and recipes will be published in the Clarion.

Some drinks will be provided.  Questions?  Contact Debbie at 404-547-0368

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